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Negative test results for two suspected enterovirus cases

     The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health (DH) today (June 2) said two latest suspected enterovirus (EV) cases have yielded negative results for the virus in tests carried out by CHP's Public Health Laboratory Centre (PHLC).

     The first was a suspected EV case with encephalitis reported to CHP today. It involved a 58-year-old man living alone in To Kwa Wan.

     The man was admitted to Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) for right patella fracture on May 20. He developed fever with decreasing conscious level from May 24.

     His condition further deteriorated and was transferred to Intensive Care Unit (ICU) on June 1. Neurological examination showed ophthalmoplegia.

     A CHP spokesman noted that the man did not have any signs of hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD). Clinical diagnosis was brainstem encephalitis and possibly secondary to EV71 infection. He is in critical condition.

     Laboratory results for rectal and throat swabs, stool and nasopharyngeal aspirate specimens taken from the patient were negative for EV and EV71.

     The second case involved a 45-year-old woman suspected to be an EV case who died in Princess Margaret Hospital on June 1, 2010. The spokesman noted that her specimens also yielded negative result for EV in the tests by PHLC.  

     The woman developed vomiting and tachycardia on May 31. She sought medical treatment at the Accident and Emergency Department of Princess Margaret Hospital and was admitted the same day.  

     As her condition deteriorated, she was transferred to ICU on June 1 and passed away the same day. The case has been referred to the Coroner for investigation.

     The spokesman said the woman had no HFMD symptom. Her blood, throat and rectal swab specimens yielded negative results for EV and EV71.

     "Further laboratory tests will be carried out by PHLC," the spokesman said.

     The spokesman added that home contacts of the woman were asymptomatic.

     Meanwhile, the spokesman said results for laboratory tests on specimens taken from a three-year-old girl suffering from HFMD with cerebellitis complication were still pending.

     The spokesman reiterated the importance of strictly observing personal and environmental hygiene to prevent HFMD and EV71 infection.  

     For more information about the current status of HFMD, please refer to a daily sitrep published by CHP at its website, The website also carries measures for prevention.

Ends/Wednesday, June 2, 2010
Issued at HKT 20:09


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